A Systematic Approach to Relief System Evaluation

Safety and Health Division
AIChE Spring Meeting and Global Congress on Process Safety
April 30, 2013 - 1:30pm-2:00pm

Managing the lifecycle of relief and flare systems data is complex and fraught with challenges and risks, whether the work is performed internally or contracted out. Relief and flare systems evaluations require mechanical and process data collection, field verification, up to date heat and material balances, information about process safeguards, scenario identification, establishing relief requirements, identification and risk ranking of deficiencies, and managing the corrective actions process for addressing deficiencies where applicable.

Reliability is influenced by technical and human factors including the quality of data, adequacy of tools used for analysis, the qualifications of the relief systems engineers performing the scenario identification, and relief and flare systems evaluations.

Availability deals with how quickly one can access accurate and up to date relief and flare systems data. This is especially challenging since relief systems data is not all “structured” data and is interconnected with other engineering data systems.

Auditability involves version control and the management of revisions/modifications of relief and flare systems that typically result from plant/process modifications, process hazard analysis, incident investigations, etc.

Maintainability requires keeping the relief and flare systems data forever green and enabling efficient reviews and revisions.

This paper describes a systematic web-based workflow methodology for managing the lifecycle of relief and flare systems data. Our methodology breaks the flare and relief systems data lifecycle into discrete components and activities, with built-in review, approval, quality management, and reporting. Built-in business and engineering rules ensure that all activities can only progress when specific quality criteria are met.

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